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What Does an Applications Scientist Do?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: Shereen Skola
  • Last Modified Date: 14 October 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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An applications scientist offers customer support for a manufacturer of scientific equipment or supplies, or a provider of lab services. This work can include a mixture of customer relations activities including sales, problem solving, and customer education. Entry-level job requirements can depend on the company. Sometimes a post-graduate degree is required, while in other cases, representatives may have training as lab technicians or salespeople, but no extensive educational experience.

One part of the work of an applications scientist can include the escalation of customer service calls. When a customer calls a company with a complex need, the regular sales staff might not be able to handle it. The applications scientist can take the call, discuss the need with the customer, and develop recommendations for products and services that may be helpful. Sometimes this involves sales visits to a site to demonstrate equipment and supplies, offer a chance to test products, and train personnel to use the equipment.

In the event a customer has a problem, the applications scientist is also available. Firms might have trouble getting reliable results with a scientific instrument, for example. This might require testing the equipment, double checking samples in the company’s own lab, and other activities. Labs can also request verification and support to make sure their equipment is working properly so they meet standards that allow them to submit test results for forensic and regulatory purposes.

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Customers of scientific suppliers can sometimes have advanced needs, and may need to be able to interact with a representative who is familiar with the kind of work they do and the equipment they use. A conventional customer service representative can pass complex calls to an applications scientist to increase customer satisfaction. In addition to selling products and services and providing support, these representatives can also lead workshops and provide education. They can show clients how to use equipment more effectively and efficiently, for example, or how to expand the services they offer by taking advantage of their company’s offerings.

Work in this field requires excellent communications skills as well as a thorough knowledge of the relevant industry. Someone working as an applications scientist for a testing company that handles veterinary specimens, for example, needs to be familiar with developments in veterinary science. Customers may contact this representative to discuss testing services, test results, and other concerns, and they may use advanced terminology and discuss complex concepts in the process.

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